April 24 - May 1: Kentucky

4/26 - Harrodsburg (48 miles 783 total)
i know that the word 'idyllic' has fallen out of my vocabulary of late, but it's back today.
we awoke to a beautiful morning in berea....blue skies, sunshine, but very chilly temps. patti set up breakfast out on the parking beside the van. after filling up on our daily ration of oatmeal with raisins & pecans & putting together our snacks to take with us, we were off in dribbles between about 7:15 & 8:30. i again had some frustration with my brakes, so gloria looked at them. i think sari & i were the last to leave. phyllis has decided to ride with judith & joan hendricks. they leave earlier & they stop less often & she prefers that style. sari & i love stopping whenever we feel like looking at something &/or want to take a picture. we're taking the sightseeing part of this excursion very seriously.
we learned at breakfast that the detour to danville's bike shop had been cancelled; instead, the danville bike-store mechanics have agreed to come to our motel in harrodsburg after their shop closes & do a little moonlighting. in fact, they're still out in the parking lot as i write this at 9 pm & are indeed working by moonlight....& flashlight. there's been a bike-a-fixathon going on out there since about 7.
fortunately my bike was one of the first fixed. the fellow quickly replaced a brake cable & housing & doublechecked some gears. i feel better already.
but back to today's ride. it was absolutely beautiful.
note in the picture of sari that she's leaning on one of the many stone fences/walls we saw today.
people pick up the rock from their fields & build these very interesting walls & fences. note the deserted back road on which we were biking...the water tower & the cows in the background.
to be fair, i need to give the other side of the kentucky canine report:
see the photo of 2 much-less-ferocious dogs with debby at one of our rest stops.
4 of us bikers had stopped there & enjoyed heaping attention on these 2 loveable pups.
& in the other photo, you'll see a dog that definitely posed no threat; the dazer really worked on this one!
we came upon this tombstone as we wandered the cemetery beside the mt. hebron baptist church, which was on a knoll way out in the country. we stopped there to munch on our lunch sandwiches & other snacks.
the winds picked up by afternoon, but they changed direction frequently. & let's face it, after monday's rains & coal trucks, winds seem an almost-inconsequential biking menace.
traffic was almost nonexistent today....except for the times we'd pull off alongside a (previously) desserted road for an outdoor potty stop, of course. with the countryside so quiet, we could enjoy the songs of the birds much more than we were able to for a while when traffic was so dense. i've been hearing a bob white lately, a bird that my father liked & often imitated. sari has heard some meadowlarks. she spotted a black bird with red shoulders today & wondered what it was. of course being from iowa, i knew it was a red-winged blackbird, a common fixture on fenceposts in my neck of the woods but not in california.
we're staying in one of those newer motels here in harrodsburg. patti made a wonderful parking-lot meal highlighted by tamale pie, along with refried beans, spanish rice, & a wonderful spinach salad. YUM! how she manages to drive the van & trailer from place to place every day, do the shopping for all our food, take a bike ride most days, & then "throw together" a wonderful meal for 25 people from a galley in the back of a luggage trailer is beyond all of us. that woman is so talented! she's cooked for over 20 years, part of that time had her own restaurant, & also serves from time to time as a trail guide & a dog-team driver in the environs of driggs, idaho, where she & her husband mark live. she also has a concession stand--the patti wagon--that she operates at area festivals in summer & fall.
a "slight" drawback at this motel is that a large water main has broken nearby & we can't drink the water. debby & anne went out to a nearby grocery store & bought the last 15 gallons of bottled water on the shelves. we'll get by on that tonight & tomorrow morning. unfortunately the water main outage also closed down the Dairy Queen just a few feet from the motel; what a blow!
tomorrow is a relatively short day...50 miles....into bardstown, ky. there we'll enjoy a rest day. we hope for another day of beautiful weather tomorrow.
Higher quality versions of the pictures from my trip are available here. If you would like copies of the original, full-size photos, feel free to e-mail my son Mark with your request. Stay tuned....

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